The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Cash and kudos from Musharraf
- Pak President announces Rs 50 lakh reward; PM Aziz calls to congratulate Inzy

New Delhi: Pakistan's thumping win in the one-day series and a highly creditable draw in the Tests has earned cash and kudos from President Pervez Musharraf, who is also the Pakistan Cricket Board patron.

At a dinner hosted on his behalf by the Pakistan high commission, on Sunday, Musharraf announced a Rs 50 lakh reward. Additionally, according to The Telegraph's sources, he 'praised' Inzamam-ul Haq's 'leadership.'

After the spectacular chase in Motera last week, Musharraf had gifted Rs 10 lakh to Inzamam.

'The dinner (at the team hotel) was scheduled for an hour from 8.00 pm, but the President stayed for an hour-and-half. He didn't make a speech, but met each player individually... He seemed thrilled with their performance,' a source pointed out.

Inzamam-ul Haq (seen in PTI picture at the Kotla on Sunday) will return with a halo around his head

Inzamam, who will be returning home on Monday evening with a halo, also received a congratulatory call from Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz.

Now, if Shoaib Akhtar had any sense, he would quickly head for the nearest phone and make two calls ' to the captain and coach Bob Woolmer.

Inzamam, of course, has declined to take credit exclusively. Interacting with the Media, at the Kotla, he maintained: 'It's the team's achievement and I only see myself as a part of it... Ladkon ne bahut mehnat ki hai...'

Talking about having been written off before even landing in India, he said: 'It's not proper to speak about a series before it has begun... Game to ground pe khela jata hai... I came with a young team, not a weak one.'

Gracious, Inzamam chose not to read too much into the four one-day wins (sequence beginning in Jamshedpur) in succession: 'India didn't do well in this series, lekin pichle teen-char sal se bahut zabardaast performance raha hai...'

Pakistan, in fact, took to the one-day series with four wins on the trot ' Colombo, Amstelveen, Birmingham, Calcutta ' and ended just that way.

Without picking individuals (not even Rana Naved-ul Hasan in the ODIs) ' in keeping with his philosophy, that is ' Inzamam listed 'experience' and coming through 'tough cricket' as the top gains from the three Tests and six ODIs.

The Pakistan captain didn't list it, but the way he grew as a leader must also rank as a huge plus. Once the euphoria settles, though, Inzamam and Woolmer are going to be back on the drawing board: 'Scheming' for the upcoming tour of the West Indies.

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